Rose State blows past NPC men, women

Rose State blows past NPC men, women

The National Park’s men’s soccer team allowed two early goals in the Nighthawks’ 3-1 loss to Rose State in a match where NPC showed fight, but the early deficit proved too much to overcome.

NPC men’s and women’s head coach Kevin Tello emphasized the effect the two early goals had on his team.

“It was massive,” he said. “Massive just in the fact that we definitely came out kind of flat footed, a little bit lackadaisical. Because we did come off of that victory on Monday, they were a little bit overconfident. It kind of took them a little bit, almost a half, to ease into, ‘OK this is the level we have to be at.’ It’s always hard starting on your back foot.”

Rose State started the first half with most of the possession and notched two decisive early goals.

Jack Wood threatened for the Raiders down both wings in the first half creating a couple of chances before the breakthrough goal.

Wood was a thorn in NPC’s side all match, consistently getting behind the Nighthawk defense with pace and dribbling ability.

“He’s a very attacking mindsetted player,” Rose State men’s head coach Michael Shanahan said. “He wants to go forward all the time, and sometimes he likes to dribble a bit too much. But today he was having success with it, and he caused madness in the attacking third so it was good.”

Wood opened space for himself down the left wing before fizzing a ball across the face of the goal that found Dylan Gray at the back post to give Rose State a 1-0 lead.

Gallery: Rose State at National Park men’s soccer 08.26.21

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Gray struck again minutes later on a similar play. The Raiders built their attack from the left side of the pitch before switching the point of attack to the right sideline. A cross from the right wing found Gray who calmly booted it in for the 2-0 lead.

Despite the early deficit, the Nighthawks worked their way back into the game and looked increasingly comfortable as the half progressed.

Yael Sandoval found himself one-on-one with the Rose State keeper, and with a clever touch, dribbled around the on-rushing goalie, but Sandoval’s angle on goal saw him drift slightly wide, hitting the outside side netting, missing a golden opportunity for NPC to get back into the match.

Later in the half Adrian Quintero was found with a through ball that saw him sprinting down the center of the pitch. The Raider defense was quick to recover as Quintero’s shot was deflected for a corner as the half ended 2-0.

“Adrian is definitely one that is dangerous,” Tello said. “He needs to work on a couple of things. Obviously his experience with the Little Rock Rangers and playing in Brazil and everything like that has definitely helped. He’s one that we for sure want to kind of help mold and send him off to do great things.”

NPC started the second half promising with a shot on goal, but the momentum flipped right back in Rose State’s favor when Wood was pulled back in the box and fouled for a penalty kick.

Gallery: Rose State at National Park women’s soccer 08.26.21

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Even though NPC goalkeeper Xavier Marquez guessed the right way on the penalty kick, Jake Lario slotted his strike into the back of the net as Marquez jumped over the ball to give the Raiders a 3-0 lead.

Things turned worse for the Nighthawks when Matthew Farias received his second yellow and was sent off after fouling the Raiders near midfield.

Despite going down to 10 men, NPC actually notched a late penalty kick goal. David Montelongo stepped up to the spot for the Nighthawks and calmly sent Raider keeper Eran Shifris the wrong way to make the scoreline 3-1.

Tello said the red card made his team really step up and said the card might have been the best thing that happened to his team during the match.

“That goal we got came in from guys that were on the bench and haven’t been playing,” Tello said. “So I kind of put them in to see what they can do. They definitely showed and kind of gave me a reason to maybe change some things around in the starting lineup.”

The Nighthawks travel to Searcy today to face Hendrix at 7 p.m.


The NPC women fell behind early as the Rose State Raiders won an 8-0 shutout.

Tello said just like in his team’s match against Seminole State Sunday, everytime Rose State scored, it sent a shock factor through his squad.

“Just realizing what the level is,” he said. “I feel like a lot of players kind of think of JUCO as glorified high school, and it’s not. A lot of these players are getting ready to go D1. Whether it was grades, whether it was academics or money, they’re Division I players playing at a two-year college, and I think a lot of them are kind of waking up to that fact.”

The Raiders kept the ball for most of the match, and Tello contributed NPC’s lack of possession to fitness.

“The other team was definitely a lot more fit,” he said. “So just something that we’ll definitely work on these next six days leading to the next game is some fitness aspects of it. It led down to marking, marking in the middle of third was something that we needed to improve on. When we’re not fit enough, we’re not able to track players.”

The Raiders’ offensive performance was highlighted by Chelsie Hay who bagged a hat trick during the match.

“Chelsie’s been great,” Rose State women’s head coach Tommy Riley said. “The chances she had today she took, which is a turn in form for her. Hopefully she’s finding that form at the right time. She was one of the top leading goal scorers in the nation last year, so she will continue to score goals hopefully and continue to impress moving forward.”

Rose State dominated the first half right from kick off and never looked back.

Just a couple of minutes into the match, the Raiders found space down the right flank before a cross into the box was volleyed home from short range by Hay for a 1-0 lead.

The Raiders were quick to strike again when Caitlin Worthington snuck a shot in at the near post to give the visitors a 2-0 advantage.

Macey Fernandez then provided an assist to Brittie Nance just under halfway through the first half. Fernandez sprinted down the left wing and sent a cross along the ground into the box finding Nance who finished calmly for the 3-0 lead.

After the first half water break, NPC ventured into the opposition’s half a couple of times, but it was still all Rose State.

Joanni Thomas added to the visitors advantage when her strike cannoned off the crossbar into the net to give the Raiders a 4-0 lead.

The visitors concluded the first half, scoring after a foul in the box. Taylor Schlecht stepped up to the spot and slotted her penalty kick away calmly into the bottom right corner as the visitors took a 5-0 lead into the half.

The Raiders picked up where they left off to start the second half after a spill by Nighthawk keeper Brooklyn Thormann fell right to Joslyn Glitzke who scored to make it 6-0.

The Nighthawks had their only real chance of the game when Yessenia Vargas was able to dribble around the Rose State keeper but fired her shot wide of the goal.

Later in the half, Hay was on the score sheet again, collecting the ball down the right side of the box and firing a shot off Thormann into the goal. Hay completed her hat trick after getting fouled in the box before she slotting home PK to set the final.

The Nighthawks host Northeastern Oklahoma A&M next Thursday at 2 p.m. at Linden Park.

National Park’s Yael Sandoval dribbles around Rose State’s Eran Shifris in NPC’s 3-1 loss Thursday. – Photo by Krishnan Collins of The Sentinel-Record

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